The Times West Virginian

Sports

October 9, 2013

FURFARI COLUMN- Ernie Anderson standout WVU lineman in early 1980s

FAIRMONT — Ernie Anderson, a well-known Morgantown businessman, was a middle guard on West Virginia University’s football team in the early 1980s.

The Colliers, W.Va., native, helped coach Don Nehlen to the first four winning seasons of his outstanding 21-year career here.

Those records from 1981-84, following a 6-6 mark in his debut, were 9-3, 9-3, 9-3 and 8-4. In addition, the Mountaineers played in four consecutive bowl games.

“We got off to a really good start,” Anderson said in a recent interview.

Asked how it was playing for Coach Nehlen, Anderson replied: “It was a tremendous honor. He’s a man of his word. He’s a great American.

“It was a great experience for me. It also was a great experience for my son, Maxwell, who played for Rich Rodriguez (2006-09).”

Rodriguez was a teammate of Ernie Anderson as a defensive back for three years. Anderson observed that it’s a different style of football played today than when he played 30 years ago. But he did not elaborate.

Anderson remembers those back-to-back upset victories against Florida (26-6) in the 1981 Peach Bowl in Atlanta and the 1982 season opener at Oklahoma (41-27) that were very significant in WVU’s rise as a national contender.

But Anderson’s most memorable triumph came against favored Penn State, 17-14, at home on Oct. 27, 1984.

“It was the first win in that old series for West Virginia for 29 years,” Anderson noted.

“And with not many seconds left, fans tore down the goal posts, and the Penn State coach (Joe Paterno) conceded the contest.”

The 6-foot, 235-pound defensive standout was credited with 21 tackles, including 16 solo stops; 6 tackles for lost yards, and 1.5 sacks.

“I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to play football at the university,”Anderson said. “I had to stay in the trenches. It was fun.”

He has been owner and operator of the Varsity Club tavern for five years. It is conveniently located across Willowdale Road from the main entrance to Milan Puskar Stadium (Mountaineer Field).

“We open late and close early,” Anderson said. He has various sports portraits on the walls of his establishment.

Ernie and wife Donnie Anderson have been married nearly 30 years. Besides son Max, 25, they have a daughter, Abigail, 22.

Max is working in Long Beach, Calif. Abigail just graduated from WVU and lives in Morgantown.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • EFHS #11 PITCH -TS.jpg Bolander no-hits FSHS in 1-0 win: PHOTOS

    Jacob Bolander is known affectionately by his East Fairmont teammates as “BoBo.” After his performance Thursday, the Bee baseball team might have to change that nickname to “No-No.”
    The right-handed ace tossed a no-hitter against No. 3 Fairmont Senior in a 1-0 win over the cross-town rival at Mary Lou Retton Park.

    April 25, 2014 8 Photos

  • m #14- W #91, 44 sack-ts.jpg White tops Maroon in spring game: PHOTOS

    As spring games go Thursday night's annual Maroon and White clash at Fairmont State's Duvall-Rosier went pretty much to form.
    The White (defense), using a modified scoring system which awarded them points for stops, turnovers, three-and-out series and other things, recorded a 34-21 victory over the Maroon (offense).

    April 25, 2014 7 Photos

  • FSHS girls’ lacrosse wins on Cancer Awareness Night

    “Ring around the rosey, a pocket full of posies. Ashes to ashes, we all fall DOWN.” 
    With that last word, “down” filling the air around East-West Stadium Thursday night, Fairmont Senior put a new play into motion and scored one of its 17 goals on the night in a 17-2 win over visiting Wheeling Park.

    April 25, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: WVU depth chart sends messages

    Perhaps the most impressive thing about the depth chart West Virginia University put out at the end of spring practice was that the coaches were able to put out a depth chart, which certainly is an improvement over a year ago when the Mountaineers were really short on quality players.

    April 25, 2014

  • WVU baseball hosts K-State in Big 12 clash

    The West Virginia University baseball team will host Kansas State in a key Big 12 Conference series thisweekend at Hawley Field.
     Game one begins at 6 p.m. on Friday, game two begins at 4 p.m. on Saturday and the first pitch for game three is set for noon on Sunday.

    April 25, 2014

  • Pirates’ slide continues in 2-1 loss to Cincinnati

    The Pittsburgh Pirates are five games under .500 less than a month into the season but they insist there is no reason to panic.
    Ryan Ludwick lined a two-run double after two Cincinnati batters were hit by pitches, lifting Tony Cingrani and the Reds over the Pirates 2-1 on Thursday.

    April 25, 2014

  • Morgan Hoke -ts.jpg Polar Bear tennis sweeps East: PHOTOS

    Last week East Fairmont’s girls’ tennis team beat Fairmont Senior, 4-3.
    Wednesday at Fairmont State University, the Polar Bears returned the favor with a 5-2 win over their cross-town rival.
    Alissa Link won No. 1 singles, 8-4. Morgan Hoke won No. 3 singles, 9-7. And Avery Towns won No. 4 singles, 8-5, for the Polar Bears.

    April 24, 2014 8 Photos

  • Falcons set for spring game

    Football is back … well, kind of.
    Today at 7 p.m., Fairmont State will hold its annual Maroon & White spring game at Duvall-Rosier Field. The scoreboard won’t mean a whole lot since it’s little more than a glorified scrimmage. Instead, here are five things to watch during today’s game.

    April 24, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: NCAA football is thriving in the digital age

    The other day Baylor football coach Art Briles walked into his graduate assistants’ office and had to laugh at what he saw.
    “There’s five guys sitting in there — a couple of GA’s and some office personnel — and they all are within a foot and a half of each other and not a one of them is talking to each other,” Briles said, describing the scene “Every one of them is on the phone.”

    April 24, 2014

  • Hillberry commits to Wesleyan

    Last year Emma Harrison and Kaitlyn Conaway teamed up with Alexis Hillberry to win several relay medals at the state track meet.
    Though the two West Virginia Wesleyan runners are now in college, they helped to pass the baton to Hillberry Wednesday when she signed her National Letter of Intent to join her former teammates on the Bobcats’ track team.

    April 24, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos